Whether there's a song or an ugh in your heart as you face the first day of school (Wednesday in Hamilton County), Sunday could feel like a last hurrah before life is all about reading, writing and arithmetic. So let's make the most of what's left of the weekend.
Here's an A-to-Z list of 26 ways to enjoy the day.
A: "Apollo 11." History was made 50 years ago last month when astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first men to walk on the moon while Michael Collins orbited in the command module. The Tennessee Aquarium's Imax Theater, 201 Chestnut St., will show Todd Douglas Miller's critically acclaimed documentary, "Apollo 11: First Steps Edition," Sunday at noon and 6 p.m. Tickets are $9.95-$11.95. www.tnaqua.org.
B: Bowling. Kids Bowl Free, good for two free games, is available Sunday at three Chattanooga bowling centers: Spare Time Chattanooga, 5518 Brainerd Road; Spare Time Hixson, 5530 Hixson Pike; and Splitz Alley, 6241 Perimeter Drive. If you're not already signed up for this summertime promotion, part of a national campaign to attract kids to the sport, go to www.kidsbowlfree.com to register and receive the confirmation email you'll need to take part.
C: Camels. Did you know that you can not only see camels at the Chattanooga Zoo, but you can ride one too? You must be at least 38 inches tall to ride unaccompanied, and it'll cost you extra ($5-$6) on top of zoo admission ($7.95-$10.95). Rides take place between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and are dependent on weather and animal health. The zoo, 301 N. Holtzclaw Ave., is open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. www.chattzoo.org.
D: Dinosaurs. The time-traveling Buddy the T-Rex from the PBS Kids series "Dinosaur Train" is visiting in a traveling exhibit at Creative Discovery Museum, 321 Chestnut St., open 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Sunday. Registration is required for photo-ops with Buddy at 9:40, 10:40 and 11:40 a.m., but other activities during the day are open for walk-ups, including an art session, storytime, cooking lesson and science show. Admission is $14.95 for adults and children 2 and older (ask about discounts for seniors, foster families and first responders). www.cdmfun.org.
E: Escape rooms. Chattanooga has a handful of attractions that offer escape adventures, most of them family-friendly. Themes vary from place to place and room to room, but participants are tasked with cracking codes, deciphering clues and solving puzzles to win their freedom. Most can offer same-day reservations. Breakout Games is at 7540 East Brainerd Road (breakoutgames.com/chattanooga), Escape Mission Chattanooga is at 405 River St. (escapemissionchattanooga.com), All in Adventures Escape Room is inside Hamilton Place, 2100 Hamilton Place (allinadventures.com) and Time To Escape is at 432 Market St. (itstimetoescape.com/chatt). If booking the latter, use the discount code ChattFP for $5 off per person (good through Sept. 2).
F: Farm life. See what's being harvested down on the farm when Chattanooga Market celebrates National Farmers Market Week on Sunday. Hours are 11 a.m.-4 p.m. David Elliott plays some tunes at 12:30 p.m., and Gopher Broke performs at 2 p.m. Admission is free. www.ChattanoogaMarket.com.
G-H: G-force and H2O. You can explore a couple of scientific disciplines at Lake Winnepesaukah and its SoakYa Water Park, 1730 Lakeview Drive in Rossville. Basically, g-force is the competing tug between acceleration and gravity, which is why your stomach feels like it climbs into your throat when you ride the Cannonball roller coaster or Oh-Zone, a 140-foot freefall. On the other side of the park, water is the main attraction. The park's dry rides are open 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday, water rides 11 a.m.-6 p.m. The $34.95 admission includes access to both parks. www.lakewinnie.com.
I: Incline Railway. Travel "America's Most Amazing Mile" on the world's steepest passenger railway 9 a.m.-9:30 a.m. Sunday. You can go up and down from the Bottom Station at 3917 St. Elmo Ave., or down and up from the Top Station, 827 E. Brow Road atop Lookout Mountain. Round-trip tickets are $7-$15. ridetheincline.com.
J: Jigs. If you've ever wanted to learn to play the fiddle — jigs, reels, breakdowns — check out the Free Fiddle School every Sunday at Fiddlers Anonymous, 2248 Dayton Blvd. in Red Bank. On the first Sunday of the month, there will also be an introduction to guitar at 1 p.m., but the rest of the day is devoted to fiddlers — newbies at 2 p.m., beginners at 2:30 p.m. and intermediates at 3:30 p.m. There's a kids music showcase at 3 p.m., and a free potluck dinner at 4 p.m. A bluegrass jam, 4-8 p.m., ends the day. Find out more at FiddlersAnonymous.com.
K: Kites. We can't guarantee a breeze, but Sculpture Fields, 1800 Polk St., has become a favorite place to fly a kite. The 33-acre park is open dawn to dusk with free admission. There's plenty to see at ground level too, including 35 large-scale sculptures. www.sculpturefields.org.
L: "The Lion King." Disney's live-action reboot of its 1994 animated classic is ruling at the box office. Other kid-friendly titles at the multiplex include "Aladdin," "The Secret Life of Pets 2" and "Toy Story 4." For older kids, there's "Spider-Man: Far From Home" and "Avengers: Endgame," both rated PG-13. Regal has one theater and AMC Theatres has seven theaters in Chattanooga, Hixson, Cleveland, Fort Oglethorpe and Dalton. Get movie times at www.amctheatres.com or www.regalmovies.com.
M: Menagerie. Horses are standard on a merry-go-round, but perhaps a giraffe, ostrich or pig could make for a merrier ride. Pay your dollar and take your pick of steeds at the Coolidge Park Carousel. The fully restored 1894 Dentzel carousel is a central feature of the riverfront park, 150 River St. It's open noon-7 p.m. Sunday.
N: Nature walks. Want to disappear into the wilderness without venturing too far from civilization? Audubon Acres is the perfect place. The 130-acre wildlife sanctuary has five miles of walking and hiking trails running on both sides of South Chickamauga Creek. Hours are 1-5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $3-$6. www.chattanoogaaudubon.org.
O: Otters. The fish may be the natural draw at the Tennessee Aquarium, but the critters don't get much cuter than the river otters, whose playful antics make them the scene stealers in the River Journey building. Across the way, gentoo and macaroni penguins show off their cold abode in the Ocean Journey building. The aquarium is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $21.95-$34.95. www.tnaqua.org.
P: Predators. Normally, wolves are considered the apex predators of whatever environment they live in, meaning they're at the top of the food chain. But loss of native habitat and human interaction through hunting and vehicle collisions has led to the virtual extinction of red wolves in the wild. Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center, 400 Garden Road, is one of about 40 facilities working to reverse that trend. You can get a look at their pack of protected predators 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Sunday. Admission is by donation, but $10 for adults and $7 for children and seniors is suggested. https://reflectionriding.org.
Q: Quackers. There's actually no duck involved at Chattanooga Ducks, just a vintage military amphibious vehicle that gives you a tour of Chattanooga's sights from land and water. You do get duck quackers to sound on the trip. Bookings are available between noon and 4 p.m. Sunday at ChattanoogaDucks.com.
R: Renoir. Works by one of the masters of Impressionist art, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, are on view at the Hunter Museum of American Art, 10 Bluff View. In an interesting comparative exhibit, Renoir's works are paired with paintings by American modern artist William Glackens, who was inspired by the French painter. Hours Sunday are noon-5 p.m. Admission is $20 for ages 18 and older. www.huntermuseum.org.
S: Summer reading. Did you finish a book on your summer reading list? Did you even start one? If not, swing by one of the two Chattanooga Public Library branches that are open Sunday to pick up a book. Eastgate Library, 5705 Marlin Road, and Northgate Library, 278 Northgate Mall Drive, are both open 1-5 p.m. ChattLibrary.org.
T: Tee off. There's plenty to do at Sir Goony's Family Fun Center, 5918 Brainerd Road, but miniature golf has been the draw for untold numbers of families for decades. They're open noon-9 p.m. Sunday, but you can get Sunday's early bird special ($15 for one golf game, one go-kart ride and one bumper car ride) if you get there before 2 p.m. www.sirgoonys.com.
U: Unicycle. You may be able to score a lesson on an electric unicycle Sunday at Adventure Sports Innovation, 191 River St. Cost is $35 for a 30-minute class. They're open 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Riders must be at least 9 years old. Book at adventuresportsinnovation.com.
V: Views. Rock City's panoramic views gave rise to the assertion that visitors could "See Seven States" from Lover's Leap. After you've scanned the horizon, there's plenty more to see and do, including crossing a 180-foot suspension bridge, raptor shows and music by the Highbeams and "Old Time Traveler" Matt Downer. Open 8:30 a.m.-8 p.m. Sunday. www.seerockcity.com.
W: "The Wizard of Oz." The Bobby Stone Film Series will present two showings of this 1939 classic Sunday at the Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. Screenings start at 2 and 6 p.m.; doors open an hour before. Tickets are $5 for all ages. www.tivolichattanooga.com.
X: Railroad crossing.Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum runs its Missionary Ridge Local at 10:40 a.m. and 12:05, 1:15, 2:25 and 3:35 p.m. Sunday. The vintage short-line train trip crosses Chickamauga Creek and passes through pre-Civil War Missionary Ridge tunnel on a 6-mile round-trip between Grand Junction Station, 4119 Cromwell Road, and East Chattanooga, where passengers will see a turntable demonstration and visit the railroad restoration shop. Tickets: $12-$18. www.tvrail.com.
Y: Yankee foes. Rangers at Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park will explain how the Confederate Orphan Brigade charged the northern end of the Union line on Sept. 20, 1863, during the Battle of Chickamauga. The free living-history programs are scheduled at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. Sunday at Battleline Road (Tour Stop 2) inside the Fort Oglethorpe park. www.nps.gov/chch.
Z: Zip line. There's more than an underground waterfall at Ruby Falls, 1720 S. Scenic Highway. You can also soar through the treetops on more than 700 feet of zip lines at High Point Zip Adventure. Enjoy a round-trip zip and 40-foot climbing wall for $19.95 (combo tickets for Ruby Falls also available). Open 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. www.rubyfalls.com.
Contact Lisa Denton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6281.